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Job Search Using Social Media
Tuesday 14 Oct 2014

Gone are the days when employers and employees had to rely on paper CVs and their own connections in the working world.  Social media has changed job hunting forever, with recruiters now having an enormous talent pool to draw from.

A number of independent 2013 studies have estimated that Facebook has around 1.06 billion active users each month, Twitter has about 500 million total users and LinkedIn has a further 200 million total users. Talk about too much choice?

How do employers use social media?
Broadly speaking, employers turn to social media to help them discover talent and then to hire those candidates into their organizations.  LinkedIn is the most established of the social media platforms for these tasks, but FaceBook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube are rapidly gaining ground, especially in the recruitment and selection of sales and marketing people.

What should candidates do to compete?
Make yourself easy to find, by building your personal brand (see personal brand impact tips). Wherever employers are looking, they should find a professional and ideally consistent (i.e. same image and contact details) version of you – reassuring them that you are a candidate worth considering.

Make sure you have social media accounts with completed profiles.  This sounds obvious enough, but only 50% of those on LinkedIn have up to date personal pages, reflecting their current skills and achievements, despite this being the most obvious tool for employers to use. It’s estimated that three quarters of all available jobs world-wide are posted on LinkedIn.

Plan to be found on-line (ideally while you’re still in a job)

  • • Set-up and/or review existing social media accounts.  Ask for endorsements, add recent accomplishments, update photographs etc.

  • • Increase your visibility.  Join groups, follow industry influencers, go to networking events, participate in online discussions, produce content where appropriate.

  • • Have a professional sounding email account and/or website and blog – this is a chance to showcase your communication skills

  • • Make a list of companies you’d like to work for and start looking at their website and social media profiles to assess how best to engage with them.

  • • Update your CV and have it ready to support your future employment hopes. 

Social media job search specifics

  • • Having more than 50 connections moves your profile up the LinkedIn search rankings, so do all you can to build your network.
  • • Get recommendations that endorse your skills and expertise.
  • • Ask colleagues and former bosses and be ready to return the favour for them.
  • • Have a professional photograph.
  • • Add your LinkedIn profile to your email signature.

  • • Set your privacy settings as needed and never bad-mouth previous employers.
  • • Use Facebook’s graph search to find contacts in your network who already work in the industry you’re targeting.
  • • Be consistent by posting the same professional photograph.
  • • “Like” the company pages of those on your wish-list.
  • • Look for Facebook feeds to subscribe to, from experts in your market

  • • Follow the companies you’d like to work for since many tweet job posts.
  • • Look for trending topics and discussions you could engage in to show your expertise.
  • • Build lists of relevant people who will extend your networking reach.
  • • Remember that future employers can read your tweets!
  • • Treat your profile like a CV, complete it and add any other social media links
  • • Create and share relevant content with people in your circles
  • • Join communities to increase your circles and influence, showcasing your knowledge and sharing generously

Talk to Denholm
As a specialist sales and marketing recruitment agency we help people at every stage of their job search. We can advise you on building and communicating your personal brand through social media channels.

Get started today. Call us on +44 (0)1315546191 or email: